Star Blazers 2202 Part One is a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack that includes two Blu-ray Discs and two DVDs, and each format contains the first 13 episodes of the series. The language options available on this release are the original Japanese audio with English subtitles and an English dub.
Star Blazers 2202 Part One
English Publisher: FUNimation Entertainment
Format: Blu-ray/DVD Combo
Release Date: March 26, 2019
This portion of Space Battleship Yamato/Star Blazers is a reboot of the portion of the saga that’s known in the West as the Comet Empire story. In this first half of the reboot, I enjoyed the political intrigue that was presented early on with the Earth’s government and military. Their interactions with the Gamilans were also quite telling. While the upper brass of the military were jerks in the original version of this story, I felt that Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2202 helped to better define these characters and help to explain why they were acting like jerks. I also thought Lieutenant Keyman was a nice addition to the story and the cast.
Another thing I appreciated about this reboot was the fact that Teresa and her powers were defined here. I also liked the fact that Zworder and his people were given a race name and what kind of a race they were. Zworder’s motivations were also solidly defined and made a lot of sense.
Another good change was the depiction of the Space Cavalry members. In the original version, they were a bunch of sexist jerks, but here, they aren’t depicted that way. It was also great to see a woman among the members of the Space Cavalry in this reboot.
The first half of the reboot ends on an exciting and dramatic note. When this series was being simulcast originally, the simulcast caught up to the movies in Japan at this point, so there was a six month gap before we got to see what happened next. At least at this point, both halves of the series are available on home video, as well as for streaming on FUNimation’s website, so you don’t have to wait like I had to during the simulcast.
The Blu-ray video for this set has 1080p High Definition 16:9 (HD Native), and the audio includes DolbyTrueHD: English 5.1 and Dolby TrueHD: Japanese 2.0. The audio on the DVDs include English 5.1 Surround and Japanese Stereo.
When it comes to the bonus features on the set, my favorite was the interview with Christopher Wehkamp (the English voice of Susumu Kodai in the reboot series) and Ken Meseroll (the voice of Derek Wildstar in the English version of the original Star Blazers/Space Battleship Yamato). It was a nice “old meets new” feature, with them comparing how things were done in the recording booth between the two eras. It was also kind of cool to hear Christopher talk about watching Star Blazers when he was a kid and how Ken’s work in that show ultimately influenced him when he became an actor. The two of them seemed to have a good rapport. There is also a commentary on Episode 2, as well as textless versions of the theme songs and trailers for other FUNimation Entertainment releases.
If you watched Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199 as well as Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2202 as simulcasts and enjoyed them, then I would highly recommend this release to add to your home video library. I would recommend it both for the actual episodes and for the interview with Christopher Wehkamp and Ken Meseroll.
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